Well, it's officially mock season for the k since you guys voted for a mock over an OLB big board. I did a first round mock after the 2009 draft and one around the midpoint of the college season, but this is the first mock using a (semi) official draft order which takes a lot of the guessing, work and guess work out of the mocks leaving you nothing but crappy mockery. And so, it is with great pleasure I say, "May the mocking begin in earnest," but only because I like saying "in earnest."
With that gibberish behind us, I welcome you all into 3k mock draft headquarters. For those of you who are newer to the community, every official 3k mock draft begins by checking in with Mel Kiper, Jr.'s hair. Mel's hair, how's the 2010 draft looking at this point?
That's some damn good analysis, Kiper's hair! Well done. Let's begin...
- no previous official mocks
- acronym list: BPA/BTA: best player/talent available, CW: conventional wisdom, FO: front office
- the following picks will be determined by a coin flip: 10 & 11 (between Jacksonville and Denver, via Chicago), 16 & 17 (between San Francisco, via Carolina, and Tennessee), and 19 & 20 (Atlanta and Houston). I've picked one of the two randomly in each case.
- the last two picks are decided by the results of the Super Bowl. I'll take the Saints to win it all, so they'd have the final pick of the first round after Indy.
- as always, any requests for stuff you'd like to see in the next edition would be appreciated. I've already started working on a two-round mock, so unless there's some crazy movement, I'll just make that the next official mock.
1 - St. Louis Rams - Sam Bradford, QB, Oklahoma (M, E, W)
I think this is going to be much like Detroit's pick last year; the country is going to feel the team gravitating toward a QB before the local fan base accepts it. And just like Detroit fans last year were clamoring for offensive line help, I won't be surprised if Suh's contingent here at TST feels the sting early on (similar to the Aaron Curry fans in 2009), but this puts a lot of pressure on HC Spagnuolo and OC Shurmur to turn things up a notch offensively in 2010 especially if they take Bradford over Jimmy Clausen (QB, Notre Dame)
2 - Detroit Lions - Ndamukong Suh, DT, Nebraska (M, E, W)
Detroit largely ignored their lines in the draft in the 2009 offseason; I'd be shocked if they did the same this spring.
Pulse of the Nation (Pride of Detroit): It only makes sense that Detroit is in full pray for Suh mode (link 1, 2) which is the same as pray the Rams take a QB mode. If the Rams take Suh, that leaves Detroit with some tough questions, namely which OT would they grab out of Russell Okung (Oklahoma St.), Trent Williams (Oklahoma) and Anthony Davis (Rutgers).
3 - Tampa Bay Buccaneers - Gerald McCoy, DT, Oklahoma (E, W)
This year's mocks will be all over the place, and Tampa is a good example. Do they take McCoy if Suh is gone? Obviously, if Suh somehow slips past the Rams and Lions, he's a lock here. What about WR? If Dez Bryant (WR, Oklahoma St.), could the media attention catapult him this high? What about my overall BPA, Eric Berry (S, Tennesee)?
4 - Washington Redskins - Jimmy Clausen, QB, Notre Dame (M, E, W)
Much like the Rams taking a QB to sync his career with a new head coach (similar to Detroit and Tampa in 2009), I expect the Redskins to take their top-rated QB at #4 and part ways with the misused, misunderstood and mismissed Jason Campbell. Don't be surprised if they're picking single digits again in the 2011 draft; if you're a Redskins fan, don't let that anger you. Being that low allows you to replace Clinton Portis with top young talent and make a push in the 2011 NFC East right when the Eagles' and Cowboys' age issues catch up with them.
PotN (Hogs Haven): Over at HH, there's quite a bit of debate on how to deal with the QB issue. RIght now, it feels to me like Detroit in 2009 - so many other needs that would make the team a better fit for a rookie QB in a year, but the unfortunate reality that without a QB, this team does nothing in 2010.
5 - Kansas City Chiefs - Russell Okung, OT, Oklahoma St. (M, E, W)
Okung or Berry? Need or talent (not that Okung is a shabby talent...)? Tough call. To me, though, this smells like so many above: Scott Pioli takes over the Chiefs' operations, gets his QB of the future in Matt Cassel, and needs someone to protect that investment better than Branden Albert did this season.
PotN (Arrowhead Pride): The AP faithful haven't really settled on any one player in particular. I can't say that I blame them. With so much talent at the top of this draft, you have a chance to fill a number of vital positions with great prospects.
6 - Seattle Seahawks - Eric Berry, S, Tennessee (M, E, W)
The Pete Carroll era in Seattle begins on a very high note if they can grab Eric Berry at 6. He's my overall BPA, but with so many new administrations, who will be willing to use their top pick on a safety, albeit one who has more talent in his toe than so many other college safeties?
PotN (Field Gulls): FG isn't brimming with draft talk just yet as their hiring of Pete Carroll as HC understandably is pulling more attention. But a team that is aging quickly at the skill positions and still trying to remake itself from its peak version that saw them reach the Super Bowl just a few years ago needs to hit both these picks square on the nose. Does that mean Clausen? What about C.J. Spiller (player link, RB, Clemson)? Who konws; it's too early to gauge where Carroll is taking this team and how that affects their draft.
Cleveland needs a QB and defensive help - sure, that's obvious. I just wonder where this offense is going. Jerome Harrison impressed me and Mohammed Massaquoi put together a solid season (although I think projections of him being a star #1 WR are off base), but this team needs a playmaker on offense. If they keep trying to force Josh Cribbs into the offense, he's going to incur another big injury and I expect this one will be much more serious. That being the case, I could see them taking Dez Bryant, but if they're interested in improving their long-term prospects, Haden makes sense.
8 - Oakland Raiders - Carlos Dunlap, DE, Florida (E, W)
Trying to mock for Al Davis is like reaching deep within your football knowledge, pulling out the most ridiculous thoughts and then trying to explain them. That being the case, I see Oakland going after one of three guys: Dunlap, Taylor Mays (S, USC) or Tim Tebow (Really? You really don't know who Tim Tebow is? Go away.). Why? Because none of them make any sense. Therefore, they make sense.
PotN (Silver and Black Pride): What a wacky franchise. How can you not love the Raiders? Constant drama from top to bottom and one of the most entertaining fan bases out there. And when it comes to draft talk, well, the base is all over the place.
9 - Buffalo Bills - Trent Williams, OT, Oklahoma (E, W, D)
You could argue T-Will is the toughest O-lineman in the draft and find plenty of company, just don't argue that he's the most talented unless you want some time alone. The issue is whether he can develop the technique demanded of a successful NFL LT. If not, this would be an expensive pick for a right tackle (and not necessarily a productive one), but still much more useful than their 2009 first rounder who recently placed second in a poll for most disappointing Bill in 2009.
10 - Jacksonville Jaguars - Derrick Morgan, DE, Georgia Tech (W)
I know Tebow is the en vogue pick here, and I understand the business ramifications: Tebow would pull tons of Florida fans to Jacksonville to feed money into a business that is failing right now. If something isn't done, the Jaguars will have to move soon. I get it. But is Tebow a long-term answer? First, when would he start? When would Jack Del Rio sit David Garrard to give Tebow the starting nod? How successful could he be without a productive defense? And how long would that marriage last? It makes more sense to me to accept reality and look for the best solution for your business, for your team and for your fans - put the best team possible on the field. If that's the goal, it makes no sense to draft Tebow here, and I expect Wayne Weaver, Gene Smith and Jack Del Rio feel the same way.
PotN (Big Cat Country): Speaking of Del Rio, I sometimes used this spot last year to highlight cool things being done at several of SBNation's football communities. I have to do it again as BCC landed an exclusive interview with head coach Jack Del Rio. If you can't see that SBN is the leading collective at the center of what has to be called a media revolution (as it applies to sports, obviously), I feel for you.
11 - Denver Broncos (via ) - Dez Bryant, WR, Oklahoma St. (M, W)
Whether or not Brandon Marshall leaves, the Broncos have to seek a replacement. This aggression will not stand...
12 - Miami Dolphins - Rolando McClain, ILB, Alabama (M, E, W)
The Dolphins would do well to start rebuilding their LB corps from the inside out, and there's not a better prospect to do so with than McClain.
13 - San Francisco 49ers - Taylor Mays, S, USC (E, W, D)
Mays has some serious flaws in his game, but he's got great attributes as well that you would think would have Mike Singletary foaming at the mouth.
PotN (Niners Nation): Drew K has a pretty cool series over at NN looking at 100 prospects for this year's draft. Good stuff.
14 - Seattle Seahawks (via Denver) - Bruce Campbell, OT, Maryland (M, W)
If Seattle gets through their first two picks and hasn't brought in a new QB, 2010 could be ugly for the Seahawks. Still, it might be the best way to build their team in the long-term so that when they bring in a franchise QB for Coach Carroll, they already have young defensive playmakers in Berry (see pick #6), Lofa Tatupu and Aaron Curry to go with offensive line skill in Max Unger and Campbell.
15 - New York Giants - Earl Thomas, S, Texas (M, W)
The Giants need to refit their defense, because since Spagnuolo left, it hasn't been impressive. Filling James Butler's old spot with another Texas secondary alumni would be a solid improvement as Perry Fewell puts a defense together in the Giants' post-SB era.
16 - Tennessee Titans - Everson Griffen, DE, USC (M, W)
Kyle Vanden Bosch is aging quickly and William Hayes hasn't developed into much of a threat; Griffen has a lot of room to improve, but his raw strength for his size is undeniable.
17 - San Francisco (via Carolina) - Sergio Kindle, DE/OLB, Texas (M, E, W)
Adding Kindle to Patrick Willis would give the Niners a LB corps to rival the Seahawks; plus, he fits a 3-4 OLB mold better than any posiiton at the NFL level, although I think he could play OLB in a 4-3 better than most.
18 - Pittsburgh Steelers - Anthony Davis, OT, Rutgers (E)
The Steelers need help on their line as much as their secondary, which received more focus from the national media after Troy Polamalu got hurt. Davis allows them to move Willie Colon who I'm sure is not a fan favorite in Pittsburgh.
19 - Houston Texans - Patrick Robinson, CB, Florida St. (M, E, D)
The Texans need to improve their passing defense; Robinson makes sense here.
PotN (Battle Red Blog): This is going to be a recurrence this pre-draft portion of 2010 -- someone is going to bring up a draft thread and it's going to turn into a Terrence Cody thread (player link, NT, Alabama). I fully expect a good 90% of communities to have at least one of these in the next two months.
20 - Atlanta Falcons - Donovan Warren, CB, Michigan (N/A)
The fight for the second tier CBs should be interesting and could lead to some mid to late 1st round trades. After these two, it falls off; Javier Arenas (CB, Alabama) is too small and Perrish Cox (CB, Oklahoma St.) is too raw.
21 - Cincinnati Bengals - Golden Tate, WR, Notre Dame (M, E, W)
If nothing else, I hope this puts the passing of Chris Henry behind Bengal fans. Sad story, but this franchise is going somewhere and I would hate for a tragedy to drag them down.
PotN (Cincy Jungle): What should the Bengals do to upgrade their receiving options? Something.
22 - New England Patriots - Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma (M, E*, W)
I had to put an asterisk next to the ESPN report because I don't see how you can give a top grade in durability to a guy who had an ACL injury in high school and missed his entire 2009 season. Foolish scouting aside, Gresham is huge, and you can't teach huge-ology. You can teach technique, and that's where he's lacking. Still, the Pats could use a TE threat and Ben Watson (whose contract is up) is not a threat.
PotN (Pats Pulpit): Just like the necessary Terrence Cody thread I mentioned in #19, its evil twin, the Tim Tebow thread, will accompany in every community. And yes, you will hate to comment again, but you will. You will...
23 - Green Bay Packers - C.J. Spiller, RB, Clemson (M, E, W)
Somebody will likely take him higher, but with so many quality players at other positions (and a bumper crop of RBs on the way for the 2011 draft), Spiller isn't as much of a commodity to me. But here, he makes sense. He offers a great change from Ryan Grant and is a much better return man than Jordy Nelson.
PotN (Acme Packing Company): Not much draftiness over at APC, but obviously, there's plenty of roster change discussion. How does this relate? Because a lot of people would love to sign Aaron Kampman, but not even the Pack can decide if he's part of their 2010 plans. Now, how do we blame this on Favre again?
24 - Philadelphia Eagles - Brandon Spikes, ILB, Florida (M, E, W)
If losing Stewart Bradley for the season didn't expose the Eagles' LB corps as a soft spot, having Jeremiah Trotter rejoin the Eagles did, methinks. Even if they feel more comfortable with Bradley in the middle, they can move Spikes over to the Sam since ex-Ram Will Witherspoon is playing his first name.
PotN (Bleeding Green Nation): A couple targets get thrown around here, but no Spikes mention although Sean Weatherspoon (OLB, Missouri) does get a nod, and a deserving one at that. And while I could see the Eagles grabbing a DE, taking Greg Hardy (DE, Ole Miss) or Ricky Sapp (DE, Clemson) doesn't get as much value as Spikes IMO.
25 - Baltimore Ravens - Damian Williams, WR, USC (M, W)
This might be a bit of a reach given Williams' current stock, but Derrick Mason deserves a retirement. Seriously. If nothing else, he has earned the right to force Baltimore's hand and draft a receiver this year.
PotN (Baltimore Beatdown): Going through the comments at BB on which underclassmen they would like to see in B-more, you wouldn't think a team with so many "needs" made the divisional round of the AFC playoffs. More confusingly, I don't know if that suggests the Ravens overperformed or underperformed in 2009.
26 - Arizona Cardinals - Navorro Bowman, OLB, Penn St. (E)
The Cards need to add some youthful talent alongside Karlos Dansby; Bowman's speed on the outside would be a welcome change from rolling roster of elder statemen that keep popping up at the OLB spots in Arizona's 3-4.
27 - Dallas Cowboys - Bryan Bulaga, OT, Iowa (N/A)
Honeslty, I see the Cowboys trading up to get their LT of choice to replace Flozell. If not, this becomes a relatively easy BPA pick since they can't fill their needs at LT, FS with much confidence. I could see them settling on Bulaga to give him a shot; worse scenario is that he takes over Marc Colombo's job in a year or two on the right side. I think anyone looking to improve their O-line at the back end of the 1st round has to give a long look at Mike Iupati (OL, Idaho).
PotN (Blogging the Boys): After looking at Kiper's need list, the BTB faithful seem to be on board with improving the OL as the first task of order. The CW is all over the map, though, so keep an eye on news nuggets coming out of Dallas; they could shake up the 1st round big time.
28 - San Diego Chargers - Terrence Cody, NT, Alabama (M, E, W, D)
As I mentioned, Cody and Tebow are likely to be the two most contentious mockeries (as in my made up mock draft language, not that they are a "mockery"). Like Tebow, I think a team will pull the trigger on Cody too early, and this could be where it happens. The Chargers could use some fresh talent up front; asking Luis Castillo is asking too much, and Jamal Williams, who played just 1 game last year, is anything but reliable for the Chargers' future.
PotN (Bolts from the Blue): The CW hones in on finding a NT, but is Cody the answer? And a great post on looking at the uncappery that (seemingly) looms.
29 - New York Jets - Jason Pierre-Paul, DE, South Florida (E, W)
While I think the Jets will spend this pick on a WR, I also think JPP will go higher. He's got great speed and agility for his impressive build. I just worry about the fact that he only played one year at the top level of college football, and he did so with George Selvie (DE, S. Florida) on the other side.
PotN (Gang Green Nation): Could the Jets use help on the D-line? Of course. That's why I mocked a DE here, crumbum. But keep in mind, Rams fans, we could have picked workout warrior (and now hopeless) Vernon Gholston, GGN's #1 most disappointing Jet in 2009.
30 - Minnesota Vikings - Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee (M, W, D)
How many Williamses can Minnesota stack at DT on the depth chart? At least with Dan to go with Pat & Kevin. DWill has raw power that would be a great addition to the Vikes. I could see either Brian Price (DT, UCLA) or Jared Odrick (DT, Penn St.) here if they think either of those guys fit, but IMO DWill's strength is a great match. (I made it through this without mentioning Brett Favre! Oh shit...)
31 - Indianapolis Colts - Brian Price, DT, UCLA (M, W)
D-tackle isn't much of a position of need, but when you're coming off a Super Bowl trip, you can lean on BPA for picks. Moving forward with a young crop of defensive line studs wouldn't be a horrible situation to deal with.
PotN (Stampede Blue): Expect any SBN community who follows a team about to play in their sport's championship to be looking past the game? Me neither. But draft talk is draft talk...even if it's in retrospect.
32 - New Orleans Saints - Sean Weatherspoon, OLB, Missouri (E, W, D)
Here's someone who I think will rise through the ranks as we near draft day. I really like Weatherspoon's combination of size and agility, and I think he would fit in fill in New Orleans, my pick for Super Bowl champs.